by Tom Zimmerman, D.Min., MA, President of Life Changers Counseling

Even before the 2020 COVID-19 crisis, the families of Central Arizona were struggling. Many are recent transplants from elsewhere and lack the family and community support structures to help them meet their life challenges. The issues found across America are even more pronounced in Arizona, including relationship challenges, family breakups, addictions, and mood disorders.

Life Changers Counseling and Life Coaching is a Christian non-profit organization, which serves the families of Arizona, offering low-cost counseling for children, adolescents, adults, and families.

In 2018, we received a $5,000 COF Barclay-Giel Seed Grant. Our goal was to serve an additional 100 families in the Greater Phoenix area, using the grant to raise awareness of our services, to subsidize our already discounted counseling fees for families and to demonstrate that a relatively small grant could make a big impact in people’s lives.

In this way, we hoped to reach more people and enable them to receive mental health help regardless of their income levels. Our network of Christian Counselors and Life Coaches was ready to serve the new clients.

The Barclay-Giel Seed Grant allowed us to gain more visibility in the community. We used Google Ads, resulting in hundreds more people contacting us for help.

While confidentiality rules limit our ability to share specific improvements, we can share that many lives have been positively changed. People recovered from depression and anxiety, avoided divorce, learned new life skills, and became more effective parents as a result of this investment. Several teens learned coping skills in dealing with life’s challenges.

We also demonstrated how a limited cash donation made a significant impact on the community. Since 2019, we have expanded our outreach to southern Arizona, using Tucson as a new base.

We are very thankful to the COF BarclayGiel Seed Grant program for helping us to support these people! Funding led to a lasting difference in our communities.